Monday at 8pm starts the “sleeping show” by “Protective Edge” group in the sleepy empty halls of the Tel-Aviv’s cultural institutions. You’re welcome to join us at Shaul Hamelech 19 BLV or watch the live streaming in the following link: https://vimeo.com/event/439630 ART B AND B From 9-12 November, the “Protective Edge” group undertakes renews action, […]
Eight Artists were invited to present their works at the exhibition ‘ROOMS’: Tal Amitai-Lavi, Nadav Weissman, Dana Yoeli, Shai Yehezkeli, Amir Naveh, Tomer Sapir, Assaf Rahat and Tal Shoshan. On this occasion new bodies of work are unveiled in various mediums and creative processes that are usually hidden from view.
The exhibition draws its inspiration from the idea of a “Food Weave”. The concept originates in the field of ecology and relates to different food chains that operate in nature and have diverse interactions among them. Plants and animals are food for other living things in different relationships of producers and consumers. The exhibition seeks […]
Time After Time
Nir Evron | Uri Gershuni | Miki Kratsman
Miki Kratsman told me about him being a photography technician. He continued and specified he used to work in medical photography. I think his point was that the technical aspect never left him, and in fact had become pivotal to his work in the sense that photography could be thought of as a practicum, as continuous time, as a procedural occupation – collecting, sorting, cataloguing. As I listened I immediately, thought of literature in general, and W. G. Sebald especially, in the context of his, Nir Evron's and Uri Gershuni's works. All three of them are not only photo technicians but are also technicians of photography. All three of them are “Sebalds”. Sebald's books (rather than his stories) are some of the most essential books written by authors. Books for knowledgeable readers. This to say, each one of them is a workshop of a resourceful practice. His protagonists, like him, perform in many dimensions (widely, deeply, backwards), just to step forward. Time, nevertheless, is critical; but not necessarily in its inerrant hastiness to rush ahead. In Sebald’s books, time is coordinated, existing in a stretch of space. Some coordinates are important to linger on, others are not. Sebald's “time” is the understanding of the inability to grasp it. An understanding of a subject's inability to truly present itself. Consequently, to this predetermined failure, Sebald provides his books and protagonists with an indication mechanism; an ability to identify and to draw from a collection of details, and for one glorious moment, a second before they will vaporize into oblivion, to allow these details to illuminate, to be a part of a subjectivity, even faded one.
Miki Kratsman's images at the exhibition are taken from his Facebook page (Miki Kratsman: People I Met); Kratsman “cuts” portraits of non-combatants in the occupied territories from his photographic archive, and uploads them to his “page”. ‘What has become of them?’ He asks his Facebook audience. The answers vary; some of these non-combatants have already died: wanted, by-passers, shot with precision (target killings) by employing some of the most advanced military technology that differentiates between one and the other, or in any other conflict-related situation. Some of them are still among us. Kratsman's politics are there, of course. But Kratsman's course has additional motives. To my knowledge, Kratsman is writing a story about ‘representation’ and its fate. I use the word fate for a good reason. 'Happened' is a word that could mediate the banal next to the tragedy. Indeed, while bearing in mind the objectives in the photographs, it is photography in a violent and difficult place. The photographs are 'bad', 'cutout', 'taken by', and 'pasted on'. They are kind of an insult to the sharp and bright fetishism of photography as we know it. Kratsman points out to a fictitious subjectivity. These are classic 'missing persons' photographs; those that are pointed at, carelessly at times; a partially erased inventory list. The portraits, of people living or dead, are individually a world of its own for their relatives, yet nothing to those who want them dead. Kratsman brings this dissonance to his Facebook page. This results in a softer appearance on the one hand, while reveals the poignance on the other. Facebook, if you will, is the tool-box, the workshop. These are the boundaries of his territory; his space allowance. Facebook is “cool”, quick, clean, electronic. What does Facebook has to do with Shahids? How can one draw an analogy between a 'Bullet to the head' and Facebook 'Likes'? Or, in other words- who, or what, do I like when I 'Like' a picture of a wanted man on Kratsman's Facebook? And what does this entire colonialist Facebook issue have to do with the horrible life under occupation? These questions do not deal with sentimentality whatsoever. They are precisely what they are: questions that arise from representation, regarding the culture of representation and the ever-growing distance between 'life' and us.
We are not supposed to see camouflage nets, surely- it is what they are made for! To remain unnoticed, until it is too late; until the tip of a gun barrel appears, until the trap has been activated and we find ourselves dangling in a net from a branch in a thick jungle. The distance between the moment of discovery and the outcome is almost non-existent. There is no reaction time. They are intertwined. Camouflage nets operate as part of a whole fabric. Should they appear like a jungle, a dessert, snow. They need 'x' parts of a whole to create an illusion; to enable the hidden to stay hid. They are meant to assimilate; to conceal the cracks between nature and culture. And so, there is something pathetic about a camouflage net without anything to camouflage. Stretched without reason, or rolled tightly. As mentioned, it is a subversion against any narrated possibility. It is advised to differentiate between a plot and suspension. A plot requires time and progression. Suspense can be the by-product of a narrative, but not necessarily. I believe suspense can just exist on its own. It is an intriguing paradox; a fundamental essence of matter (suspense). Perhaps the kind we never notice its existence, until we experience it. However, would it remain suspenseful? Evron understands the difference between storytelling and a good book. This choice, of a camouflage net camouflaging itself, a net without a nature to relate to, and nothing to hide from a watching eye, is a precise choice to eliminate the omniscient narrator; the choice to try the possibility of a firsthand experience, a witty choice that allows photography to evade from the burden of the 'narrative', yet stay political, poetic, narcissistic and yet generous.
Perhaps Lot's wife just took a quick glance over her shoulder. `She could not resist’ they shall say later. 'You see, the body moves forward, away from the event. I am not there anymore’ she mumbled to herself. `The gaze is a remote control, nothing more. It will fade eventually anyway. In any case, it is only an etching tool for a hazy memory: a memory that will be made by the growing distance between my body and the occurring event, into just a 'good story'’. So, on she goes, with her back to the fire that probably cast her shadows in front of her. And then, a moment before she crosses the ridge and disappears into the valley behind it, she turns her chin few centimeters over her shoulder, as much as the spine allows. Just enough for the eye to catch a glimpse, just enough for the brain to process. A slight motion, not unintentional, and it is just sufficient for her body to harden, with no time to comprehend; to instantly turn into a pillar of salt. Past, present and future are imprisoned; her time is, paradoxically, eternalized. After her unsuccessful attempt to unify it (forward she went, backward she looked), she turned into a mass in space, a wasted potential energy. I can imagine Gershuni asking his models: 'Can you become Lot's wife for a moment?' It makes me laugh because this look over the shoulder of a certain subject has a seductive, playful, incidental nature. So it seems. This is a surprised gaze of someone who turned their head as a reaction to a touch of a hand or a voice. Not enough to turn the entire body, but certainly a gaze. It is not the gaze, in Gershuni's photographs, of someone staring into the fire of hell. One may say “it is just a reference”. However, that is not the case. This reference puts Gershuni's project in a historical context; a possibility to notice the depth of his research and the abundance of his findings; to point out 'photography' as more than a moment in time, but rather a continuum.
Rembrandt's painting 'Anatomy Lesson', that appears as a reproduction in Sebald's book 'The Rings of Saturn', depitcs a scene of a doctor's guild performing an autopsy. Those paying attention will find that the doctors bending over the dead body are actually examining the anatomy book on the bedside rather than the body. Sebald is directing our attention to the subject's annulment in the face of science. Indeed, but not solely. The use of the Rembrandt's reproduction enables Sebald to extend the literary boundaries; this photograph of a painting which depicts an open book, and its use as a platform for visual examination, is transformed into a modernist and moral argument. This is, by all means, a long stretch of the complexity of life as a representation. Be it a painting, photograph, story or book. This is the understanding of the essence of mediation. And this is, I believe, the understanding that Evron, Gershuni and Kratsman are sharing.
Text: Danny Yahav-Brown
Uri Gershuni (born 1970), lives and works in Tel Aviv. Gershuni holds a BFA and MFA from the Departments of Photography and Fine Arts, Bezalel Academy of Art and Design, Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. Recipient of the Israel’s Minister of Culture ‘Art Encouragement’ Award (2012), and the Young Photographer Award, Haifa Museum of Art (2005). Gershuni participated in numerous solo and group exhibitions in Israel and abroad.
Nir Evron (born 1974), lives and works in Tel Aviv. He completed a BFA degree at The Photography Department in Bezalel Academy of Art and an MFA degree in Media Art at the Slade School of Art, London. He has exhibited extensively in Israel and abroad in museums, festivals, biennales and galleries among them the 6th Berlin Biennale, MARCO Vigo, The Center for Contemporary Art in Tel Aviv, 25 FPS in Zagreb, the Rotterdam International Film Festival, and PhotoEspana in Madrid. On 17.05.13, Evron will present his work “A Free Moment” at the ICP triennial. He was awarded The Ostrovsky Family Fund Award at the (2011), the Israel’s Minister of Culture ‘Art Encouragement’ Award (2011), the Shmuel Givon Award from the Tel Aviv Museum (2008), Israel’s Minister of Culture award for a young artist (2007).
Miki Kratsman, born 1959 in Argentina, immigrated to Israel in 1971. His photographs were regularly published in the Israeli daily newspaper “Haaretz” in the rubric “The Twilight Zone” in collaboration with journalist Gideon Levy. Since 2006 he presides as head of the photography department of Bezalel academy of arts, Jerusalem. Kratsman exhibits consistently in Israel and throughout the world, amongst them are: the Venice biennale; the 2006 Sao Paulo Biennale and MARCO, Vigo, Spain; the Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Santiago, Chile; Herzliya Museum of Contemporary Art; Tel Aviv Museum of Art; Witte de With, Rotterdam; La Virreina Image Centre, Barcelona; MUSAC Museum, Leon. He is the recipient of the Emet Prize for Science, Art and Culture (2011), and the fifth recipient of the Robert Gardner Fellowship in Photography, Peabody Museum of Archaeology & Ethnology, Harvard University 2011.
Gallery Talk with the participation of Nir Evron, Uri Gershuni and Miki Kratsman, 24.05.2013
Curator: Nira Itzhaki
A group exhibition with the artists:
Assaf Rahat | Michal Rubens | Shahar Yahalom | Yoav Efrati.
Opening: Thursday, 9.2.17, 8pm
A group exhibition With the artists:
Asim Abu Shaqra
Arnon Ben David
Curator: Nira Itzhaki
The exhibition Summer's Colors is divided in to two exhibition spaces. The first exhibition space shows the works of Aya Ben Ron, Gal Weinstein, Gideon Gechtman and Christoph Keller. The second exhibition space displays a collection from Zigi Ben- Haim's recent works.
Zigi Ben-Haim (1945, lives and works in New Yok), creates a new world that exits somewhere between abstraction and representation. his iconography, which appears consistently through his work, references our current state of environmental affairs: global warming, the squandering of non-renewable natural resources etc. Ben- Haim's bold imagery and assertive colors suggest that we must be vigilant in remembering our relationship between the world of nature and man-made world. Ben-Haim created a new visual language, a disparate grouping of elements that represent the building blocks of life: leaves, bricks, ants, writings, fire, water, etc.
Zigi Ben-Haim is an internationally acclaimed artist. His works can be found in the collection of museums such as the Guggenheim, the Jewish Museum, New York, the Israel Museum, the Tel Aviv Museums and in numerous public and private collections.
Gideon Gechtman (1942, lives and works in Israel), was awarded in 2006 for life-long achievements on behalf of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sports. In this exhibition Gechtman exhibits the work, Obituary Notice, from 2006, based on previous works. In 1975 Gechtman published in the newspapers an obituary notice on his name, a piece which was acknowledged as one of the highlights in conceptual Israeli art of the seventy's. Since than Gechtman's works characterize with subjects such as, death, Immortalization and memory. Through out the years Gechtman's personal discussions on Immortalization became a general and immortal symbol.
These days the Art Gallery in Rishon L'ezion is holding Gechtman's exhibition, Dead-Line.
Gal Weinstein (1970, lives and works in Tel Aviv), represented Israel at the São Paulo Biennial in 2002, in “The New Hebrews” exhibition at the Martin Gropius Bau, and in many other international shows. Today, Weinstein is working on a large art project which will be shown in October 2007 in a new museum in Spain.
In this exhibition, Weinstein is exhibiting four new works of large fingerprints, made of PVC.
Aya Ben Ron (1967, lives and works in Tel Aviv), is a multi-disciplinary artist. Her works combine video, print, sculpture and painting. Ben Ron has exhibited extensively in Israel and abroad, at the São Paulo International Biennial, Brazil, 2006, Arco 07, Madrid, and currently at the Exhibition Schmerz, at the Hamburger Bahnhof Museum, Berlin.
In this exhibition Ben Ron exhibits a series of color prints from her latest work Margalith which includes a video work and etchings. The color prints series deals with the image of a women-flower. The viewer is witnessing the process of shriveling that the women-flower is going through. The image of the crippled, broken women-flower expresses the feeling of separation and lack of roots which Ben Ron, among other issues, deals in her work Margalith.
Christoph Keller (1967works and lives in Berlin), is one of Germany's most interesting and unique photographers and video artists. In the exhibition shown works from an ongoing series of photographs using slit-scan technique in self built cameras. Exploration of urban time profiles. The Rundum-Photographs is very long images representing a sequence of time rather than they are spatial. Only movement is being depicted. Instead of being “at a certain place at a certain time”, the observer of panoramic reproductions finds himself in motion. Time builds the horizontal axis. It is only when speed of the camera begins to match that of the object that the panoramic reproductions begin to liken the photographic.
POINT OF VIEW: AN ANTHOLOGY OF THE MOVING IMAGE
Francis Alys, David Claerbout, Douglas Gordon, Gary Hill, Pierre Huyghe, Isaac Julien, William Kentridge, Paul McCarthy, Pipilotti Rist and Anri Sala.
Francis Alys, El Gringo (2003)
Born 1959, Antwerpen, Belgium. Lives and works in Mexico.
Running time: 4 minutes 12 seconds
In El Gringo, viewers experience the discomfort of being an outsider when the camera is confronted by a pack of snarling dogs.
Interview held by Hans Ulrich Obrist.
David Claerbout, Le Moment (2003)
Born 1969, Kortrijk, Belgium. Lives and works in Brussels and Berlin.
Running time: 2 minutes 44 seconds
Claerbout uses cinematic techniques to create a suspenseful journey through a dimly lit forest that reaches an unexpected conclusion.
Interview held by Hans Ulrich Obrist.
Douglas Gordon, Over My Shoulder (2003)
Born 1966, Glasgow, Scotland. Lives and works in London.
Running time: 13 minutes 48 seconds
In this simple head-on shot, Gordon uses hand gesticulations against a white sheet to communicate violent and sensual emotions.
Interview held by Hans Ulrich Obrist.
Gary Hill, Blind Spot (2003)
Born 1951, Santa Monica, California, USA. Lives and works in Seattle, Washington.
Running time: 12 minutes 27 seconds
A brief encounter in the street with a man in a southern French city that has a large North African population is slowed down, forcing the viewer into an intimate relationship with the subject and the shifting emotions in his face.
Interview held by Hans Ulrich Obrist.
Pierre Huyghe, .05 (2003)
Born 1962, Paris, France. Lives and works in Paris.
Running time: 5 minutes
Huyghe’s conceptual film references Andy Warhol’s Empire State and pays homage to Steven Spielberg’s Close Encounters by incorporating the Devil’s Tower monument made famous in the film. Huyghe splits the screen in half, creating a mood of suspense, as we wait for a correction that never takes place.
Interview held by Hans Ulrich Obrist.
Isaac Julien, Encore (Paradise Omeros: Redux) (2003)
Born 1960, Bow, East London, UK. Lives and works in London.
Running time: 4 minutes 38 seconds
The stunning, color-saturated images that make up this work refer to the African Diaspora and the quest to find roots in a New World.
Interview held by Dan Cameron.
William Kentridge, Automatic Writing (2003)
Born 1955, Johannesburg, South Africa. Lives and works in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Running time: 2 minutes 38 seconds
Kentridge’s hauntingly beautiful series of animated black and white drawings brings viewers into the artist’s unconscious, using surrealist techniques to explore the point where writing and drawing intersect.
Interview held by Dan Cameron.
Paul McCarthy, WGG (Wild Gone Girls) (2003)
Born 1945, Salt Lake City, USA. Lives and works in Los Angeles.
Running time: 5 minutes 20 seconds
Depicting a sailing party gone wrong, McCarthy questions the effects that violence and mutilation, both real and simulated, have on the viewer in contemporary culture.
Interview held by Richard Meyer.
Pipilotti Rist, I Want to See How You See (2003)
Born 1962, Rheintal, Switzerland. Lives and Works in Switzerland.
Running time: 4 minutes 48 seconds
Rist explores the macrocosm of humanity in a video, art and music collaboration. A lyrical tale of a witch’s coven is played over images of a person where each body part symbolically represents an area of the world.
Interview held by Hans Ulrich Obrist.
Anri Sala, Time After Time (2003)
Born 1974, Tirana, Albania. Lives and works in Paris.
Running time: 5 minutes 22 seconds
The details in Sala’s oblique and barely moving frame stimulates the viewers’ s visual and auditory capacity by forcing them to concentrate on a single puzzling image until
its essence is revealed in an unexpected flash of light.
Interview held by Hans Ulrich Obrist.
Over the past two years, the project's participants—curator Revital Ben-Asher Peretz, video artist Yoav Cohen, choreographer and dancer Sahar Azimi, and artist Michal Shamir—held multiple meetings. Brainstorming in their various media led to departure from each participant's comfort zones, prompting them to challenge their predefined professional identities, and to cross the lines toward the other's court.
The chosen title “Protective Edge”—the English name given to the 2014 IDF operation launched by Israel in the Gaza Strip—inspired the group to explore the human conditioning pertaining to protection, security, and borders, as well as the artistic urge to defy, rebel, question, and walk “on the edge.”
The performance events, which extend over the gallery's three levels and form an integral part of the project, are intended to undermine the customary viewing and consumption habits in an art gallery, theater and cinema via distortions, shifts, interventions, and interruptions introduced by group members.
To purchase tickets for the performance events scheduled to be held during the exhibition, please enter the link
Festive Opening Exhibition
Chelouche on Mazeh
“I am unpacking my library. Yes, I am. The books are not yet on the shelves, not yet touched by the mild boredom of order. I cannot march up and down their ranks to pass them in review before a friendly audience… I must ask you to join me in the disorder of crates that have been wrenched open, the air saturated with the dust of wood…”
Walter Benjamin: “Unpacking my Library, in Illuminations, Engl. trans. (London: Fontana, 1982)
The festive inaugural exhibition “Re-Location” is celebrating the expansion of Chelouche Gallery and its move to “the Twin House”, a spectacular historical building in central Tel Aviv, designed and built in the 1920s by architect Joseph Berlin. The building is an outstanding, unique example of neo-classical architecture in 1920s Tel Aviv; a specimen of a period residential building adapted to local needs and built with state-of-the-art techniques brought to the country by Berlin.
The western wing of the Twin House was transformed by Chelouche Gallery into a space for contemporary art, while carefully abiding by the strict preservation laws to maintain the building's idiosyncratic character as well as its cultural and historical heritage. Chelouche on Mazeh offers a fascinating, enriching combination of Israeli and international art, in a manner which redefines the boundaries of art and culture, inseparably assimilating with the lively urban fabric of Tel Aviv.
The opening exhibition has set out to keep with the consistent agenda promoted by Chelouche Gallery to enhance the artistic dialogue between Israeli and international artists toward realization of a cultural-artistic vision and a commitment to continue playing a pivotal role in Tel Aviv's cultural milieu.
The show addresses the notion of re-location on its various aspects, the re-placement of something shifted from its original location, while relating to physical, mental, social and philosophical contexts and exploring questions of movement, uprooting, transference, disconnection, shifting, and displacement.
Exhibiting: Tal Amitai Lavi, Zigi Ben-Haim, Gideon Gechtman, Uri Gershuni, Guy Goldstein, Christoph Keller, William Kentridge, Miki Kratsman, Tova Lotan, Volker Maerz, Melanie Manchot, Yossi Mark, Michelangelo Pistoletto, Assaf Rahat, Michal Rovner, Yadid Rubin, Tomer Sapir, Michal Shamir, Nari Ward, Gal Weinstein, Nadav Weissman, Nurit Yarden
On Paper- Works from the Gallery's Collection
27.06.13 – 20.07.13
Dana Gillerman, Galia Yahav, Smadar Levi, Uri Proust, Michal Shamir
Some time ago, the gallery artist Michal Shamir approached the three artists: Dana Gilerman, Smadar Levi and Galia Yahav and the musician and director Uri Proust, and invited them to create a joint project with her at the gallery.
The name of the exhibition “Parallel Lines won't meet in their lifetime” is taken from a work by Galia Yahav, a ready-made that is actually a piece of paper torn from a child's math notebook, in an obscure elementary school somewhere. The childish saying: “won't meet in their lifetime”, planted deep in the heart of the mathematical theorem, in the heart of the axiom, us also in the heart of the artistic work. The exhibition deals with inserting the living dimension, the breathing, personal, bleeding dimension, into the world of abstract lines.
Into the universe of expending lines without beginning, middle or end, and without cessation, penetrate elements of transience, of materialism, last, anxiety and more. Through this act the poetic, almost tragic quality of the junction- that- won't- happen- in- their- lifetime, is discovered, one that generations of students will go on memorizing and proving.
Between these two parallel lines, in the space and tension created, proceed the works in the exhibition.
Dana Gilerman presents a video version reflected on a screen, to Courbet's renowned “Origin of the World”. In this version the woman is slowly bleeding, staining the sheet, and the painting. Galia Yahav presents a work created out of surfaces made out of dried apricot covering a small statue of a woman, transforming it into patchwork, into peeling incrustation. Smadar Levi presents three beds- partially tanning beds, partially ambulance stretcher- in a waiting position to the vacationer or injured. Michal Shamir presents a three-dimensional close- up to Jesus' stigmata wound, dug into a wall and refusing to hill, and made out completely from gummy candy. Uri Proust presents video art functioning as a ghost refusing to recover.
The exhibition deals with the gaps between the intellect and the senses, the interval between body and painful memory, in the classical procedures of art history and their impotence to help us. It also deals with a body, controlled and domesticated by the technology of illness and pain.
“Passage” International Art Encounters No. 3
The joint exhibition of Gideon Gechtman, Bertrand Lavier and Haim Steinbach is the third project in the series of international art encounters “Passage” of the Chelouche Gallery of Contemporary Art. The Project – begun in 1996 in collaboration with Dr. Lóránd Hegyi, the director of the Museum of Modern Art in Vienna – puts the emphasis on an international exhibition space where artists meet, who express themselves in a similar or parallel language' to hold a true dialogue in real time. A two-way meeting-point. A place for cross-fertilization.
At the meeting between Gideon Gechtman (living and working in Israel), Haim Steinbach (living and working in New York) and Bertrand Lavier (living and working in France), an interesting dialogue is created between the artists and new works were conceived as a result of ideas they presented and discussed.
This is the first time Steinbach, Lavier and Gechtman meet in an intimate exhibit allowing for a discussion between them. This exhibition shows the results of dialogue, which is so lacking in this area. In-spite of common meeting-points – relation between object and image, origin and copy, real and artificial, “alienation”, use of daily objects and the severance from their original context – all deal differently with the way of representation and how the real and its representation change roles.
With Steinbach objects are taken as is; while questioning the concept of originality' they are essentially arrangements and they “enable a kind of 'museofication' of objects, as if one can return them to their 'objecticity', and not only see them as symbols of themselves”. The slogans Steinbach exhibits, 0%, &, אור בלבנה!!!, deal with what is missing, when the theme or the product itself are absent. As they are painted on the gallery walls, they deal with the representation without 'substance'.
In Gechtman's case the objects are dealt with. The representation of reality is done by copying it or by interfering with the object. The objects are not ready-mades in the regular sense, they are perceived as such. Thus the gap between the original and its representation is created. In the works Gechtman shows, Moonshine, Levana and Moonlight Brick, the treatment of the ready-made is not only the treatment of the object itself, but also of the marketing-advertising system which stands behind it.
Bertrand Lavier combines daily objects in such a way, that each one can be something else or many things concurrently, a refrigerator for example can be a base, a painting or a sculpture. In the exhibition Lavier shows “Walt Disney Productions”. These are enlarged photographs of “paintings” and “sculptures” “exhibited” in an “art museum” in a Walt Disney cartoon series. By enlarging them and turning them into photographs, he grants these virtual works an actual standing in the art world. He transposes a “modern” sculpture from the virtual world of Disney to a three-dimensional work, thereby providing it with a concrete existence in the world.
The exhibition discuses the way the political/social/communicational agenda reflects in the works of three social oriented artists, and questioning the gap between reality and its representation through the media imagery. Mifkad is a state of absence and appearance at the same time. The Hebrew word contains different meanings: quorum, counting, criticism, stabilization, ritual, parade, order, absence and appearance.
The exhibition discuses the paradox of reviling-hiding, of directing reality to a virtual structure who provide information that supposedly showing everything, when in fact there is a control mechanism that hides everything and cuts off from the ability to experience.
Motti Mizrachi, one of the leading artists in Israel, exhibits the work “CNN Light” which consists of illuminated Perspex circles, making up the word ‘Light’ in Braille on a wall. Greenish scenes from “Desert Fox” – the 1991 Gulf War between Iraq and the Western allies (which is very similar to the images from the last war in Iraq) – are glued onto the circles. The work focuses on the electronic media, headed by the CNN, a state onto itself – a superpower. The television and the Internet have blurred the difference between a video game and a war. Mizrachi chose to display the work illuminated by a hidden light, using the word that connotes light, but is unseen, because it is written in Braille. What happened in the war is supposedly known, and was supposedly shown to the public, but the public saw only the flickering light. The war is therefore indecipherable, like Braille who is concealed and incomprehensible. Braille is understood and legible by those who do not see light, who uses the sense of touch.
Miki Karzman and Boaz Arad, involved and updated field and video photographers, exhibits the work “Untitled”, a 40 minuets documentary video film taken in the Erez Barrier, on April 2003 at 5 p.m.
The work raises the quotation of the identity and visibility of the photographed people – an absent-present population in Israeli reality.
Guy Raz, a political social artist and one of the leading and exciting artist of the younger generation, exhibits the work “Diskit 4 Catacomb 1” (1994-2003), that deals with the memory and oblivion of the dead Israeli soldier, the absent soldier. The one who left for the battle and never came back and what is left from him is a last photo is a metaphor of commemorating and forgetfulness of any soldier.
Printed on the gallery walls are 450 head images of one soldier without eyes, so there is no dialog or connection with him. The manual imprint of the zirox photos analogous to the private memory of every relative who remembers differently the silhouette of the dead/absent soldier and so the heads became collective memory.
In another part of the gallery, 324 head images of another soldier taped to an additional wall, which crates a state of “imprisonment” of the head between the paper and the wall who prevents completely any real dialog with the viewer.
Along side, in a secluded area, 2 army personal badges (diskit) are placed in boxes with the imprint of the soldiers’ eyes, which replace the official name and number imprint.
Miki Kratsman | Uri Gershuni | Nir Evron
Recent works 2015
Miki Kratsman's work Al-Zarnug (panorama 1), 2015 features a 6.4 meter long monumental panoramic view of the unrecognised Bedouin village Al-Zarnug, about fourteen km south east of Beer Sheba. The panorama, which will be presented for the first time in Israel, was made as part of Kratsman's ongoing project – the “Bedouin Visual Archive (temporary name)”, initiated in 2010 during the demolitions of the unrecognised Bedouin village Al Araqib. In recent years Kratsman has been vigorously researching archives, while mainly considering their organization structure (categorization, index, mapping, meta-data etc.), and the production of documents that are made specifically as archival material. It includes photographs of the architecture, portraiture of the residents, alternative infrastructure and the changing scenery of the Bedouin surroundings. The archive will be launched on-line during 2016.
Nir Evron's series of photographs Dreyfus/Méliès (2014) has won Nir Evron the 2015 Miron Sima prize for the Visual Arts in the field of photography. The work presented at the exhibition is based on nine episodes from The Dreyfus Affair (1899), a documentary filmed by French pioneer of filmmaking Georges Méliès (1861-1938), as Dreyfus’ military retrial was underway. In Dreyfus/ Méliès, Evron projected the film and photographed all the individual frames of the film’s chosen episodes one by one, subsequently superimposing them in single photographic prints where each represents one episode. The resulting images retain some recognizable features of the scene but the action and narrative are blurred. Compressing the cinematic sequence into single frames becomes equivalent to compressing time, hence creating a visual fold in the continuum of time and image, that contains all separate instances of the narrative, yet discloses nothing. Time, although intuitively a relatively simple concept, is rather difficult to visualize or conceptualize. In Evron’s case, it becomes a philosophical meditation on the relationship of the two abstract ideas of time and image, resulting in one object-picture: the final photographic print.
Uri Gershuni's works at the exhibition are yet another episode in his lasting journey to the history of photography and personal past. Once again Gershuni traveled to Lacock, in England, the ancestral village of inventor of photography William Fox Talbot. First, he wandered around Lacock with a digital pin-hole camera that produced a series of murky, mysterious photographs entitled “Yesterday's Sun.” His second visit was virtual, through Google Street View alone, but Gershuni transformed the screenshots he chose into cyanotypes, blue-tinted photographs that result from an elaborate 19th century technique. Finally, instead of regarding the outside world in any way, Gershuni turned inward to his own body, imprinting photographic paper with his fingerprints, following Talbot's ideas about the indifference of the camera, and the sun as “The Pencil of Nature.” The full series is on view at the Israel Museum, Jerusalem, in Gershuni's solo exhibition Apollo and the Chimney Sweeper (curator: Noam Gal).
“In the early 1840s, soon after he invented a way to reproduce images that would change history as a new medium – photography – the English scholar and scientist William Henry Fox Talbot contemplated one of his first photographs. The image was a simple cityscape he had captured while in Paris. Talbot wrote of it: “A whole forest of chimneys borders the horizon: for, the instrument [the camera] chronicles whatever it sees, and certainly would delineate a chimney-pot a chimney-sweeper with the same impartiality as it would the Apollo of Belvedere.” In Western culture, this ancient Roman sculpture of Apollo – god of the sun, of prophecy, and of art – symbolized all that was beautiful and perfect. The sooty chimney sweep, on the other hand, was an emblem of the impoverished urban working class that the Industrial Revolution had created.
This equation of sun and soot, sublime art and grueling labor, has been reconsidered by the artist Uri Gershuni, who was born in Israel in 1970. Gershuni traveled to Lacock, Talbot's ancestral village in England, but not as a tourist taking in a scenic site. First, he wandered around Lacock with a pin-hole
camera that produced a series of murky, mysterious photographs entitled “Yesterday's Sun.” His second visit was virtual, through Google Street View alone, but he transformed the screenshots he chose into cyanotypes, blue-tinted photographs that result from an elaborate 19th century technique. Finally, instead of regarding the outside world in any way, Gershuni turned inward to his own body, imprinting photographic paper with his sperm or fingerprints.
Following Talbot and his ideas about the indifference of the camera, which impartially equates the lowly and the lofty, darkness and enlightenment, led Gershuni to camera-less photography. As his work progresses, the sun – which Talbot called “the pencil of Nature” – loses its power. Is this perhaps an indication of the effect the industrial age (which witnessed the invention of the camera) has had on the earth and its sunlight?”
– Text by Noam Gal from “Apollo and the Chimney Sweeper” exhibition catalogue, Israel Museum
Curator: Uri Gershuni
The title of the group exhibition Nehushtan, curated by Uri Gershuni, is taken from the biblical story of Moses and the Israelites at the end of their journey through the desert: “8 And the LORD said unto Moses, Make thee a fiery serpent, and set it upon a pole: and it shall come to pass, that every one that is bitten, when he looketh upon it, shall live. 9 And Moses made a serpent of brass, and put it upon a pole, and it came to pass, that if a serpent had bitten any man, when he beheld the serpent of brass, he lived.” (Book of Numbers, 21)
Gershuni is conducting an interpretive/hermeneutic reading into the biblical text by works of art and through reflections on art making; he suggests understanding the story in a way that highlights the tension between real life and art, origin and imitation, wounding and healing, death and life, and the way all these come across through speech/language. Word plays, tones and phonosemantics add another layer to the visual experience- they echo as magical whispers while viewing the exhibited works.
Participating artists: Mirit Cohen, Pinchas Cohen-Gan, Bianca Eshel-Gershuni, Moshe Gershuni, Stephan Goldrajch, Amir Neve, Avi Sebah, Shai Yehezkelli
Gallery Talk at the exhibition 'Nehushatan', 06.06.14